LU, BISD celebrate Cardinal NEST opening at Guess Elementary School

Lamar University is proud to announce the opening of its 10th Cardinal NEST (Navigating Excellence Success and Triumph), sponsored by Education First Federal Credit Union, at Roy Guess Elementary School on April 25.

Cardinal NEST learning labs are innovative and high-tech learning spaces for students of underserved elementary campuses to engage with STEAM-related software. Guess NEST

“The goal for the innovate learning lab was to create a safe and unique, innovative learning space for students of our community,” said Dr. Teresa Simpson, executive director of the Lamar University Division of Diversity, Inclusion and Community Relations. “This lab has been designed to spark the interest and love of learning in areas of technology, engineering, art, math and reading. These resources take students beyond their imagination, fueled by their curiosity, passion and creativity for learning, supporting career exploration and cultivating an early college-going culture.”

With a gift of $15,000, Education First Credit Union is sponsoring the construction of the tenth NEST at BISD’s Guess Elementary School.

“We would like to take this opportunity to thank our community partner, Education First Federal Credit Union, for if it was not for their $15,000 partnership, our Cardinal NEST would not be here today,” said Simpson.

In addition to technology, a different feature will be present in the Guess Elementary School NEST — an Education First Credit Union youth savings program, promoting the importance of saving.

“Education First is a dedicated business partner in education of Guess elementary and is honored to have the opportunity to sponsor this Cardinal NEST program,” said Education First Federal Credit Union President and Chief Executive Officer Kevin Conn. “As a credit union founded by teachers, our roots are in education; it’s in our DNA, it’s who we are, it’s what we do.”

In partnership with the LU Office of Community Relations, Economic Development and Student Access, Beaumont Independent School District previously established Cardinal NEST learning labs at nine other district elementary schools — Pietzsch-MacArthur, Blanchette, Charlton-Pollard, Amelia, Martin, Fletcher, Dishman, Regina-Howell and Homer Drive.

“We are almost at the end of this project where every single elementary school will have a Cardinal NEST. Our vision in Beaumont ISD is to work in collaboration with the entire community to create an inclusive environment and academic excellence that supports the diverse needs of all learners,” said BISD Superintendent Dr. Shannon Allen. “I’m so thankful for partnerships and the community that cares about the education of their students. Thank you again, Lamar University, Education First Federal Credit Union and all of the community partners here today.”

For more information about Cardinal NESTs, visit